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World War I, as never seen before

November 11, 2018 08:38 IST

... And the guns fell silent. On the Eleventh Hour of the Eleventh Day of the Eleventh Month the “Great War,” the “War to End all Wars,” was over.

More than 8.5 million troops perished in World War I, which ended 100 years ago this Sunday. Fighting ended with an armistice signed on November 11, 1918.

As the world pays tribute to the fallen, here are rare and unseen photographs that show the daily life of soldiers in the trenches, destruction of towns and military leaders during the World War I as the world marks the centenary year of the mega war, which began in 1914.

The photos are from a collection of hundreds of glass plates taken by an unknown photographer left behind by a viscount (nobleman) in the French army.

A French soldier aiming an anti-aircraft machine gun from a trench at Perthes les Hurlus, eastern France, during WWI. Photograph: Odette Carrez Collection/Reuters
 

Soldiers and horses amid a destroyed spot on the battlefield at Maurepas on the Somme front, northern France, in October 1916. Photograph: Odette Carrez Collection/Reuters

French soldiers moving a 95 mm cannon, on the rear guard near the front, at an unknown location in France during WWI. Photograph: Odette Carrez Collection/Reuters

A statue of Christ on the cross on a tree at Fricourt on the Somme front in France, in October 1916. Photograph: Odette Carrez Collection/Reuters

A French soldier after taking a shower, at the rear guard near the front line, at an unknown location in France. The placard reads "Thermal complex of the Poilu, showers, massages, chiropodist, manicurist. Free massages for women". Photograph: Odette Carrez Collection/Reuters

Captured Germans soldiers marching through Chalons en Champagne, Eastern France, in September 1915. Photograph: Odette Carrez Collection/Reuters

French General Joseph Joffre (second right) congratulating and awarding medals to soldiers, who fought in the Battle of Verdun, in Verdun, in March 1916. Photograph: Odette Carrez Collection/Reuters

A shelter for machine gunners in a French trench at Apremont-la-Foret, eastern France. Photograph: Odette Carrez Collection/Reuters

German soldiers (rear) offering to surrender to French troops, seen from a listening post in a trench at Massiges, northeastern France. Photograph: Odette Carrez Collection/Reuters

A dog pulling a Belgian machine gun at an unknown location in northern France during the WWI. Photograph: Odette Carrez Collection/Reuters

Injured soldiers arriving at a hospital before being evacuated on the Champagne front, eastern France during WWI. Photograph: Odette Carrez Collection/Reuters

Carcasses of animals strung up before being cooked for soldiers, on the Champagne front, eastern France, during WWI. Photograph: Odette Carrez Collection/Reuters

Soldiers attending an entertainment show at Suippes, on the Champagne Front, Eastern France in 1915. Photograph: Odette Carrez Collection/Reuters

French soldiers standing in German trenches seized after being shelled on the Somme front, northern France, in 1916. Photograph: Odette Carrez Collection/Reuters

French troops from the rear guard eating lunch near Arras, Northern France. Photograph: Odette Carrez Collection/Reuters

Field Marshal Horatio Herbert Kitchener (second left) meeting French General Albert Baratier (right), on horseback, as French Marshal Joseph Joffre looks on (second right), on the Champagne front, Eastern France in 1915. Photograph: Odette Carrez Collection/Reuters

A priest conducting mass for French soldiers on the Champagne front, eastern France in 1915. Photograph: Odette Carrez Collection/Reuters

A French officer standing near a cemetery with graves of soldiers killed on the front lines of WWI, at Saint-Jean-sur-Tourbe on the Champagne front, eastern France, on December 19, 1916. Photograph: Odette Carrez Collection/Reuters
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